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RLWC 2025

yakstorm

First Grade
Messages
5,371
We are very good a repeating the same mistakes time and time again... this was the whole reason we held 5 years between 08 and 13 was to try and avoid clashing with the major international tournaments, yet here we are again repeating the same mistake.

Another thing I don't get, is if we are going to bother having the World Series involving the top 4 qualifiers, why don't we just take a leaf out of what the ICC does with the T20 World Cup, and either include the matches as lead in games to the World Cup? Or better yet, just have 12 teams instead of 10?
 

jim_57

Moderator
Staff member
Messages
4,359
Internationals are an afterthought now unfortunately, as evidenced by this year.

Pacific we have 3 team comps instead of 4 which means it still runs the same amount of time but only one game a week for each. Most half arsed format there is, no wonder some players opted for a rest rather than train for another month+ for 2-3 games.

Should have at least had a top tier of 4 and added Lebanon and/or Vanuatu/Solomon Islands to tier 2.

Meanwhile in Europe we have England & Tonga with no warm up or tour games to speak of, all 3 games played in small northern stadiums. Meanwhile France, Wales, Ireland etc have what?
 

Coastbloke

Bench
Messages
4,051
Did anyone note the gap at the other Cup between the All Pratts v Falklands losers semi and the score lines in last years RLWC semis..The media certainly missed it..
 

Coastbloke

Bench
Messages
4,051
I know it was from the ST’s What’s the Buzz, but Mal reckons RLWC 2026 will be in Oz. What’s he know that no one else does?
 

Perth Red

Post Whore
Messages
65,719
I am also bitterly disappointed with the reduction in teams for upcoming RLWCs. Just as we had landed on a good formula we throw it all away.
As usual we don’t have the money for big comps. The last wc had record corporate support, decent govt funding and decent crowds and still only just broke even. If you want to blame anyone blame rugby league fans for refusing to get behind international game.

I dont like the decision to go down to ten sides but I can understand why they’ve made it.
 

Perth Red

Post Whore
Messages
65,719
I know it was from the ST’s What’s the Buzz, but Mal reckons RLWC 2026 will be in Oz. What’s he know that no one else does?
Well there’s only two options, nz or aus so it’s not a hard guess lol

hopefully Oz in 2026
and nz and PI in 2030 funded by Oz govt.
 

titoelcolombiano

First Grade
Messages
5,318
As usual we don’t have the money for big comps. The last wc had record corporate support, decent govt funding and decent crowds and still only just broke even. If you want to blame anyone blame rugby league fans for refusing to get behind international game.

I dont like the decision to go down to ten sides but I can understand why they’ve made it.
The costs did blow out due to covid protocols and the delayed tournament. Without the additional costs and womens and wheelchair it may have made some good money
 

titoelcolombiano

First Grade
Messages
5,318
Been thinking about this more and more... we need to two pools of 5.

Pool A hosted by NZ & Fiji (for Fiji games)
NZ
Samoa
Tonga
Cook Islands
Fiji

Pool B hosted by Australia & PNG (for PNG games)
Australia
England
Lebanon
France
PNG

Pool A ensures all the big Pacific clashes and will bring huge crowds and excitement. Fiji will host their own games to avoid some bludger crowds in NZ if they were to play there. Should be able to average 12-14k and have some quality matches.

Pool B would have Lebanon playing most of their games out of Leichardt (except the Kangaroos) making it a carnival and cultural event for the big Sydney Lebanese community. Should be able to pull 10k to each of their games. PNG will host all of their own games ensuring that they are pulling decent pool stage crowds. Kangaroos can tour the country playing England at Suncorp, Lebanon at Commbank, PNG in PNG and France I'd take it to a regional area and try and pull 12-15k based on the star power of the Kangaroo players. Should be able to average 12-14k.

Semis
Aus v either Samoa, Tonga, PNG or Fiji I'd play at Commbank and if it is Tonga or Samoa, should be able to pull 25k

NZ v England in Auckland for a spot in the WC final should be able to pull 20k min in NZ

Final
I think Suncorp is the place to ensure at least 40k (I don't think Auckland or Sydney would quite get there). Upside is, if the Kiwis go 50/50 with the Kangaroos over the next couple of years and the meet in the final it would be pushing closer to 50k in Brisbane and closer to 40k in Auckland.

All in all, a cup like that should be able to come close to our best crowd average so far of 16k per match in 2013 and should have some exciting clashes right throughout the tournament.
 

Perth Red

Post Whore
Messages
65,719
Been thinking about this more and more... we need to two pools of 5.

Pool A hosted by NZ & Fiji (for Fiji games)
NZ
Samoa
Tonga
Cook Islands
Fiji

Pool B hosted by Australia & PNG (for PNG games)
Australia
England
Lebanon
France
PNG

Pool A ensures all the big Pacific clashes and will bring huge crowds and excitement. Fiji will host their own games to avoid some bludger crowds in NZ if they were to play there. Should be able to average 12-14k and have some quality matches.

Pool B would have Lebanon playing most of their games out of Leichardt (except the Kangaroos) making it a carnival and cultural event for the big Sydney Lebanese community. Should be able to pull 10k to each of their games. PNG will host all of their own games ensuring that they are pulling decent pool stage crowds. Kangaroos can tour the country playing England at Suncorp, Lebanon at Commbank, PNG in PNG and France I'd take it to a regional area and try and pull 12-15k based on the star power of the Kangaroo players. Should be able to average 12-14k.

Semis
Aus v either Samoa, Tonga, PNG or Fiji I'd play at Commbank and if it is Tonga or Samoa, should be able to pull 25k

NZ v England in Auckland for a spot in the WC final should be able to pull 20k min in NZ

Final
I think Suncorp is the place to ensure at least 40k (I don't think Auckland or Sydney would quite get there). Upside is, if the Kiwis go 50/50 with the Kangaroos over the next couple of years and the meet in the final it would be pushing closer to 50k in Brisbane and closer to 40k in Auckland.

All in all, a cup like that should be able to come close to our best crowd average so far of 16k per match in 2013 and should have some exciting clashes right throughout the tournament.
That would be a very good format, well done sir. Send it to whoever hosts!
 

yakstorm

First Grade
Messages
5,371
Been thinking about this more and more... we need to two pools of 5.

Pool A hosted by NZ & Fiji (for Fiji games)
NZ
Samoa
Tonga
Cook Islands
Fiji

Pool B hosted by Australia & PNG (for PNG games)
Australia
England
Lebanon
France
PNG
That would definitely be the best format for a 10 team tournament. It would mean that everyone gets at least 4 Tests, we have a minimum of 4 big blockbusters in the group stages (NZ v Samoa, NZ v Tonga, Tonga v Samoa, Australia v England), a number of other sellable games and ensures the Finals are all big games.

Also means every team has a fair chance of making the finals and you don't have any scenario where 1 team in the 'Super Pool' has zero chance of qualifying, or someone misses out in the other pools because of just +/-.
 

taste2taste

Juniors
Messages
1,805
Interesting!

Looks like November 24 is when they'll announce who the 2 interested host countries are. Interesting comments from Grant on why they reduced the team's in the men's tournament



IRL Chair Troy Grant said: “The IRL Board made the decision in July that future Men’s, Women’s and Wheelchair World Cups would be staged as stand-alone events after RLWC2026 and the level of interest in hosting those tournaments confirms that was the right decision.

“The response to the ITT [Invitation to Tender] process also underlines the strategic approach behind the IRL Board’s decision to reduce the size of the World Cup finals in order to cultivate more host countries, which will make rugby league a more global sport and the World Cups more accessible events.

“It is one of the many benefits of the international calendar that the IRL is able to schedule three World Cups in three years to provide more countries with an opportunity to host one or more of the game’s flagship tournaments.”
 

siv

First Grade
Messages
6,553
Been thinking about this more and more... we need to two pools of 5.

Pool A hosted by NZ & Fiji (for Fiji games)
NZ
Samoa
Tonga
Cook Islands
Fiji

Pool B hosted by Australia & PNG (for PNG games)
Australia
England
Lebanon
France
PNG

Pool A ensures all the big Pacific clashes and will bring huge crowds and excitement. Fiji will host their own games to avoid some bludger crowds in NZ if they were to play there. Should be able to average 12-14k and have some quality matches.

Pool B would have Lebanon playing most of their games out of Leichardt (except the Kangaroos) making it a carnival and cultural event for the big Sydney Lebanese community. Should be able to pull 10k to each of their games. PNG will host all of their own games ensuring that they are pulling decent pool stage crowds. Kangaroos can tour the country playing England at Suncorp, Lebanon at Commbank, PNG in PNG and France I'd take it to a regional area and try and pull 12-15k based on the star power of the Kangaroo players. Should be able to average 12-14k.

Semis
Aus v either Samoa, Tonga, PNG or Fiji I'd play at Commbank and if it is Tonga or Samoa, should be able to pull 25k

NZ v England in Auckland for a spot in the WC final should be able to pull 20k min in NZ

Final
I think Suncorp is the place to ensure at least 40k (I don't think Auckland or Sydney would quite get there). Upside is, if the Kiwis go 50/50 with the Kangaroos over the next couple of years and the meet in the final it would be pushing closer to 50k in Brisbane and closer to 40k in Auckland.

All in all, a cup like that should be able to come close to our best crowd average so far of 16k per match in 2013 and should have some exciting clashes right throughout the tournament.
Agree 2 seeded pools of 5 teams is the way to go with 10 team format

Pool A - 1,4,5,8,9
Australia, England, Tonga, Lebanon, World Series Qualifier #1

Pool B - 2,3,6,7,10
NZ, Samoa, PNG, Fiji, World Series Qualifier #2

It means a 7 week tournament with no quarter finals

Dont think adding quarter finals adds benefit, though 2A v 3B , 2B v 3A with 1A and 1B having a bye would add value

As it stands Samoa & Tonga would be in opposite pools
 
Last edited:

Perth Red

Post Whore
Messages
65,719
ENGLAND may head to New Zealand for the 2026 Rugby League World Cup - they want it.

A tendering process is going on to find the southern hemisphere host after France pulled out and the competition was delayed by 12 months.
And SunSport understands the Kiwis have signalled their intent to host it.

They may also link up with Pacific islands like Tonga, Samoa, Fiji and Papua New Guinea - who could all host men's group games.

New Zealand's only serious competitor is Australia, which co-hosted the 2017 tournament with its neighbour but had the final.

South Africa expressed an interest previously but the 13-a-side code has no real footprint in that nation.
International Rugby League chiefs have trimmed the men’s World Cup to 10 teams from 16 after being concerned at the number of blowout results last year.

And they revealed 22 expressions of interest from 11 countries have come in for the World Cups – with eight for the women’s version in 2028, five for the wheelchair in 2029 and seven for the men’s in 2030.
That leaves just two for hosting all three in 2026 but International Rugby League boss Troy Grant insisted: “We made the decision in July that future Men’s, Women’s and Wheelchair World Cups would be staged as standalone events and the level of interest confirms that was the right decision.

“The response to the Invitation to Tender process also underlines the strategic approach behind the decision to reduce the size in order to cultivate more host countries, which will make rugby league a more global sport and the World Cups more accessible events.

“It is one of the many benefits of the international calendar that the IRL is able to schedule three World Cups in three years to provide more countries with an opportunity to host one or more of the game’s flagship tournaments.”

 

titoelcolombiano

First Grade
Messages
5,318
International Rugby League chiefs have trimmed the men’s World Cup to 10 teams from 16 after being concerned at the number of blowout results last year.



What a short sighted, knee-jerk reaction. If every sport had this attitude, no world cup would ever grow beyond a handful of top nations. Hell the commercially successful RUWC had a 33 point average margin of victory over the tournament.

Such shit thinking by the IRL...

What happens if France, Cook Islands and Lebanon get handed a few floggings? According to the logic of our illustrious leaders at the IRL we'll cut the WC down to 6.

Oh but wait, the Kangaroos got blown out by 30 last week, Tonga by 22 and Samoa by 50 the week before. Better cut all three from the World Cup too to save "embarrassment". Then we'll cut PNG and Fiji because they flogged each other in consecutive weeks.

Ladies and gentlemen we are proud to announce the 2026 world cup which has been trimmed to two nations, England and New Zealand to avoid blow-out scorelines.
 

Last Week

Bench
Messages
3,646
What a short sighted, knee-jerk reaction. If every sport had this attitude, no world cup would ever grow beyond a handful of top nations. Hell the commercially successful RUWC had a 33 point average margin of victory over the tournament.

Such shit thinking by the IRL...

What happens if France, Cook Islands and Lebanon get handed a few floggings? According to the logic of our illustrious leaders at the IRL we'll cut the WC down to 6.

Oh but wait, the Kangaroos got blown out by 30 last week, Tonga by 22 and Samoa by 50 the week before. Better cut all three from the World Cup too to save "embarrassment". Then we'll cut PNG and Fiji because they flogged each other in consecutive weeks.

Ladies and gentlemen we are proud to announce the 2026 world cup which has been trimmed to two nations, England and New Zealand to avoid blow-out scorelines.
I think it's a bit deceptive to say that the World Cup was reduced because of blow out scores.

It was reduced because of lack of revenue. Crowds just weren't there for the smaller/less competitive matches. They're a hard sell.
 

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